Days after 25-year-old Vignesh allegedly died due to custodial torture by the Chennai police, a CCTV clip showing police chasing and beating the deceased has emerged. The visuals also show the deceased being taken away from the Kellys Junction by the police.
This is believed to have happened during an escape attempt.
Meanwhile, on Saturday, 30 April, a joint action committee against custodial torture released its fact-finding report in the case, where it was stated that Vignesh's death was due to custodial torture.
The committee comprising social workers and advocates have since demanded that the cops responsible for the alleged crime be arrested, reported The Hindu.
Recommendations of the Committee
Investigating officers from the CB-CID must arrest the suspended inspector, assistant commissioner, and deputy commissioner besides other officials responsible for Vignesh's death, the committee urged. The committee urged that the principal sessions judge should initiate proceedings and receive petitions from witnesses, according to the Protection Scheme 2019. Besides, witnesses should be offered adequate protection.
Provisions of Section 302 (Punishment for Murder) and provisions of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act have to be looked into, since Vignesh was from Scheduled Caste, the committee added.
Further, the team asked for CCTV footage from the police stations at Foreshore Estate, Secretariat Colony and Ayanavaram which had the recordings of the sequence of events that happened on 18, 19, and 20 April to scrutinise them. The committee also urged Chief Justice of Madras High Court to take suo moto cognisance of the case and also monitor it so that custodial deaths don't happen in the future.
The group also asked the DGP CB-CID to make the investigating officer's name public immediately so that the witnesses could share information to him
What Were the Findings of the Team?
They said that the night round police had on the night of 18 April took Vignesh an his friend Suresh into custody from Kellys. They were brutally beaten up using police helmet, the fact finding team said, adding that Vignesh died the next day.
Soon after this, autopsy was carried out and the body was cremated without following the guidelines issued by Madras High Court regarding custodial death. Even before the autopsy began, the family of the victim was denied access to the body, the committee noted.
The G5 Secretariat Colony police had taken Vignesh and his friend Suresh in custody on Monday, 18 April. The 25-year-old died the following day, due to custodial torture in the police station, his family had alleged. The police, had however said that he developed a seizure and died while he was being taken to hospital. While Vignesh used to offer horse rides at Marina Beach, Suresh is a construction worker, reported The News Minute.
The family had also alleged that the police paid them Rs 1 lakh to "settle the case." CM MK Stalin had announced Rs 10 lakh as compensation to the family.
(With inputs from The Hindu, The News Minute.)